John McCain gave another of his 'pattoned' straight talks today this time, in Santa Ana, California. McCain was attempting to burnish up his economic credentials. The subject was the subprime mortgage/ steep drop in housing prices crisis. His speech offered little more than the usual Bush bromides; tough love for the small homeowner but forgiveness for the investment banker solution, favored by the administration and the Federal Reserve Board. Here is McCain:
Let's start with some straight talk:
I will not play election year politics with the housing crisis. I will evaluate everything in terms of whether it might be harmful or helpful to our effort to deal with the crisis we face now.
I have always been committed to the principle that it is not the duty of government to bail out and reward those who act irresponsibly, whether they are big banks or small borrowers. Government assistance to the banking system should be based solely on preventing systemic risk that would endanger the entire financial system and the economy.
In other words, McCain strongly opposes bailouts except when they are needed. This won't give investment bankers much pause, who already make huge and obscene bonuses for 'gambling', by taking on risky mortgages when the housing prices and then the hedge funds go up, and when both go down, the government can backstop their losses to prevent 'systemic risk'.
Digby, in her post 'Grown-up In Charge'
was not any more impressed when McCain talked about some of his unrealistic and simple-minded details for resolving the crisis.
John McCain is going to solve our economic problems by convening a meeting of the nation's accountants.
He also thinks that people should be forced to put bigger down payments on their houses, but he also that mortgage lenders should be like GM after 9/11 and give zero down payment loans.
Oh, and the banks don't trust each other and now they don't trust the people. Prices go down as well as up. He will not allow dogma to override common sense.
If you liked having the idiot George W. Bush in charge during a national security crisis, you're going to love having the moron John McCain in charge during an economic crisis.
Io other words, if McCain were in charge, just as he would solve the Iraqi crisis between the Shiites and the Sunnis, he would get the major lenders and borrowers in a room, and say "knock it off, let's cut the bull...sh.t!".
Note: Wizbang Blue is now closed and our authors have moved on. Paul Hooson can now be found at Wizbang Pop!. Please come see him there!